President Reuven Rivlin meets 70 senior members of AIPAC at his residence in Jerusalem. (Photo: Mark Neyman/GPO) President Reuven Rivlin meets 70 senior members of AIPAC at his residence in Jerusalem. (Photo: Mark Neyman/GPO)

“Terrorists and their supporters must be condemned, and those fighting terror… must be supported,” PM Netanyahu declared.

Israel’s “relationship with the US is of the highest strategic importance,” President Reuven Rivlin told a delegation of 70 members of the board of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), who arrived in Israel on Wednesday.

Speaking at his residence in Jerusalem, Rivlin pointed out that the US and Israel “are more than just good friends who share many common interests. We share common values: democracy, freedom of speech, and freedom of expression.  We understand how important these values are.”

War on Terror Must Include Moral Clarity

The delegation later met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who took the opportunity to strike back at Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Erdogan had stated on Monday that he could “hardly understand how he [Netanyahu] dared to go” to the rally in Paris against Islamic terror and in support of peace.

“I think the war against terror will not succeed if it’s founded on hypocrisy, and I have yet to hear any world leader condemn the comments by Erdogan,” Netanyahu told the delegation.

“He [Erdogan] said that Israel should not have been represented in the march in Paris, and the reason he gave was our actions to defend our citizens against the thousands of rockets hurled at our cities by the terrorists of Hamas. I believe his shameful remarks must be repudiated by the international community, because the war against terror will only succeed if it’s guided by moral clarity,” Netanyahu declared.

Hamas leader Haniyeh (L) and Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan in Nov. 2014. (Photo: Mohammed Al-Ostaz/Flash90)

Hamas leader Haniyeh (L) and Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan in Nov. 2014. (Photo: Mohammed Al-Ostaz/Flash90)

Erdogan  accused the West of being behind the terror attacks in France, and he banned the circulation of the post-terror attack edition of Charlie Hebdo magazine. Turkey recently became the headquarters of the Hamas terror organization.

“That means that the terrorists and their supporters must be condemned,” Netanyahu continued, “and those fighting terror, like Israel and the United States, must be supported. It’s as simple as that.”

Speaking at the Hyper Cacher (Super Kosher) supermarket in Paris on Monday where four Jews were murdered on Friday by an Islamic terrorist, Netanyahu told European leaders: “Israel supports Europe in the struggle against terrorism, and the time has come for Europe to support Israel in the exact same struggle.”

Netanyahu warned that Israel and the US – and the Western world at large – face an uphill battle against terror. “I think we’re going to be tested by these issues of moral confusion versus moral clarity and courage versus cowardice again, and again, and again. This is not a one-shot battle,” he said.

By: United with Israel Staff